Tips on Wearing the Marketing Hat for the HR Professional
As an HR professional, you must wear many hats, some of which are not what anyone would intuitively think of as being human resources functions. Beyond being an expert on sourcing and services procurement, HR also sometimes dons a lawyer’s hat, an accountant’s cap, and with increasing frequency, a marketer’s chapeau. Yes, the increasing competition for talent in a global economy has made it more important than ever for HR people to flex a marketing muscle in order to attract and retain the talent that is the lifeblood of their businesses. As if you weren’t busy enough already! But don’t worry, there are a number of pages from the Staffing Industry’s marketing playbook to leverage to your benefit as an HR practitioner. Here are a few of the strategies that staffing firms use. According to a solid post titled, “Branding in the Staffing Industry” at StaffingIndustry.com, staffing suppliers generally market themselves to their customers and to the candidates they’re in the business of sourcing. They also leverage the quality of their employees as another means for attracting positive attention to their offerings.
As an HR practitioner wearing the marketer’s hat, you can repurpose the effective strategies of the staffing suppliers.
Market to Clients
Interact with your organization’s marketing department to inform them on the lengths to which HR goes to ensure the best talent is working for you and not the competition. Selling “your people” and their expertise is a slam dunk for any organization’s marketing messaging. Plus, it drives a positive feedback loop wherein your company develops a strong reputation for hiring the best workers and that makes it attractive to new candidates.
Market to Candidates
Like the SI piece says, “Demonstrate [to candidates] that you care about them by taking the time to understand their strengths, personalities, career ambitions and compensation expectations. This will reap benefits not only in differentiating your firm in candidates’ minds, but also in enhancing your ability to deliver quality talent to your clients.” Spending some time and effort focusing on the needs of your candidates (not just the needs of your business) demonstrates that your company is the kind of place folks would be happy to work with. How to accomplish this goal?
Build a Better Mousetrap
OK, so not a better mousetrap, rather, a better candidate trap (i.e. website). This piece also from StaffingIndustry.com explains why candidate focused websites are correlated with statistically significant higher average satisfaction. Whether you use staffing suppliers exclusively, or you perform some or all labor sourcing on your own, the efforts put forth in the launching of a candidate-focused web presence are intuitively attractive to candidates; demonstrating the level of attention and value a worker can expect from engagements at your company.
There is a whole school of thought and a bundle of best practices for leveraging brand awareness and other marketing practices to improve talent sourcing. Talk to your nextSource representative for more information on how to engage this strategy to its fullest extent.